GLENN Manton plans to bring more than his football skills and big league experience to Beaufort.
In his first official visit to Crow country yesterday, the 178-game AFL star with Carlton and Essendon spoke of his intentions to not only help out the football club where he could, but the community as a whole.
The co-founder of Whitelion, an organisation that assists troubled youths, Manton hopes to advocate men’s health and good lifestyle in the region.
And, in his own words, he also hopes to “fill the trophy cabinet up a bit”.
Manton comes to the club to join new Beaufort coach Dale Power, a long-time friend.
“I’m not here for a one-year thing and then to fly off into the sunset, I’m not interested in being part of something that is a one-hit wonder,” he said.
“Whether it’s three years or five years, I’m here as long as the club welcomes me and they could not have done that any better so far.
“It’s not just about footy though, it’s about the community. It’s about drawing the community spirit together and if I can do that then that’s great, through footy or not through footy.”
Expecting to run out in round one at home against Dunnstown, Manton said he hoped to play at least 10 matches throughout the year.
But just as important to helping steer Beaufort to a successful season on the park, the 40-year-old said he was passionate about helping improve the lives of others.
“I’m not coming in to change the club and tell people how to run the club, absolutely not,” said Manton, who is also a motivational speaker.
“I’m here if they want some help and I can use what I’ve done to help them out.”
Club president Mike O’Connor said it was the first time the club had dabbled in an ex-AFL star, besides a one-off appearance by former junior player Shane O’Bree in 2008.
“It’s about him being a role model for our younger players, it’s about everything he brings to the club outside of football,” O’Connor said.
“The feedback we’ve had so far is that it is great to have him around.”
Beaufort finished last year’s CHFL season in 15th place, with just five wins on the board.